Cats can, much like humans, experience feelings of anxiety and stress. A stressed cat can indicate an underlying health problem in most cases. One of the best ways to detect the issue is to see if the cat has stopped using the litter box. You might see it peeing in a new place or having a problem urinating. Though this problem can be a simple behavioral condition, it can be a sign of a disease like FLUTD.
Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease affects the lower urinary tract in a cat and can occur for several reasons. In this post, we talk about the potential treatment methods available for this condition in cats to help pet owners understand what they should expect when their felines are affected.
FLUTD Treatment – A Complete Guide
FLUTD is a problem affecting the cat’s lower urinary system to prevent the bladder from emptying the urine properly. It is a group of clinical symptoms that could have multiple causes. Some of the most common symptoms of FLUTD include licking urinary opening, painful or frequent urination and blood in the urine.
The key to treating FLUTD is to identify the cause that could include infection, urinary tract blockage, bladder stones or cancer. Some other possible causes of this condition include inflammation of the bladder, debris accumulated in the urethra or bladder, injury or tumor in the urinary tract, problems with the spinal cord, stress or water incontinence.
A vet generally conducts a physical examination and collects urine samples to evaluate FLUTD. X-rays, blood tests and abdominal ultrasounds may also help identify the root cause of the condition. Timely treatment can save your cat from any severe implications and improve her quality of life. The vet may recommend dietary changes, antibiotics, increased water intake, fluid therapy, surgery or other methods depending on the underlying problem.
FLUTD Cat Treatment – How It Works?
After diagnosing the root cause for FLUTD, your vet may recommend the ideal treatment in the form of medicine, therapy, surgery or a combination of these as required. Problems like infection are generally treated with antibacterial medication based on the culture and sensitivity tests of the bacteria. If the cat is suffering from lower urinary tract disease because of bladder stones, the vet may prescribe a diet change to dissolve the stones. Some stones don’t dissolve and need to be removed surgically.
A FLUTD caused by a urethral plug requires emergency attention because it can result in kidney failure if left untreated. These are generally removed using an anesthetic after which fluid therapy is used to get rid of inflammation. Though bladder tumors are not so common in cats, older felines sometimes develop the condition. The signs of cancer develop too late to be treated by surgery. In this case, chemotherapy is employed to reduce the size of the tumor and improve the cat’s quality of life.
Cat FLUTD Treatment Cost
The cost of FLUTD treatment can vary depending on the cat’s symptoms and the underlying condition. The total cost also depends on how severe the condition is and what treatment methods are required. If the cat has developed FLUTD from a bacterial infection, for example, it can be resolved with antibiotics that cost just a few hundred dollars. However, if the condition occurs from urinary blockage or plugs, surgery and hospitalization may be required and the expenses can reach up to a few thousand dollars at a time.
The cost of treating FLUTD in cats also varies on the basis of the location of the vet and expertise. Some vets may charge lower for consultation while you can expect to pay a few hundred dollars to up to thousands for highly specialized, experienced vets in prime locations. Hospitalization costs also vary by location.
Cat FLUTD Home Treatment
The underlying condition for FLUTD often decides the treatment plan. If the symptoms are resulting from stress, the vet can recommend home treatment that involves lifestyle and dietary changes and behavioral management. Here are some of the best tactics you can use for FLUTD home treatment to help your cat achieve healthy urination.
Limit stress as much as you can. Provide your pooch a lot of hiding places so that it can find privacy and avoid getting stressed. You can also use sprays and diffusers that help make the cat feel calm and easy.
Provide multiple litter boxes. Introduce additional litter boxes in other areas of the house to encourage the cat to pee.
Keep strange smells away. Household and personal items lying around in the house can exhibit unfamiliar scents that encourage the cat to mark territory by urinating. Try to discourage this behavior by keeping away these items.
Enforce a positive environment. Praise the cat for desired litter box behavior and reward with treats. Never use negative reactions like yelling or punishing.
Monitor other cats. If you have a multi-cat household, see that other cats are not preventing the cat with FLUTD from using the litter box.
Increase the number of water bowls. If your cat is diagnosed with cystitis or infection, it should drink more water. You can consider installing a water fountain or put more bowls of fresh water around the house to encourage the cat to keep drinking water.
Feline Urinary Tract Disease Diet – What You Should Know?
Some cats need to change the diet and nutrition to address the symptoms of FLUTD. Your vet can suggest the best diet for your feline to help it with urinary problems. The most common recommendation is prescription foods made specifically for urinary care. These diets are designed to promote a healthy pH in the urine and can effectively dissolve crystals before they build up and become a problem.
Your feline urinary tract disease diet should contain a lot of canned food. This type of wet food is generally recommended for cats with urination problems. It contains added moisture that can keep the cat hydrated while helping it flush the bladder easily. Apart from this, supply fresh water to the cat at all times. Feed the cat smaller meals often during the day. Such changes and prescription diet can help the cat handle the symptoms better and prevent future reoccurrences of FLUTD.